In Ornament and Crime Adolf Loos compared architectural decoration with the scriblings on lavatory walls; graffiti recently discovered on a basement wall in Cambridge provide a curious comment on one of the architectural controversies of Victorian England.
In 1976 Mr Christopher B. George of Emmanuel College, Cambridge, came across pencilled drawings behind old shelving on the plaster walls of a long disused basement storeroom in No. 22 Parkside, an Early Victorian house on the east side of Parker's Piece. As well as scribbled calculations and an unidentifiable rough plan, there were caricature drawings of a mongrel-styled building with a Classical portico and a Gothic tower, labelled ‘What Palmerston wants for the Foreign Office. Hardwick would have done it better, but he's dead’, and of a huge statue, labelled ‘Albert the Good, but he's dead too. G.G.S.’ (PI. 60).